Peacock Feather Vector Art Walkthrough

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Title

  • Software: Inkscape (or any other software with vector tools)
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Subject: Peacock Feather

Update: A small intermission – you may be interested in the following related tutorials/posts published at a later date:

Peacock Workshop [Hide/Show]

As promised in the last post, here is a walk-through on creating a peacock feather using any vector graphics software. Peacock Feather Walkthrough Final

It was when I created the vector art for the previous post, when I realized the form and structure of the peacock feather. The one in that post was done using a reference photograph, and it did not have the neat curves that is usual signature of any vector art. I worked out several steps to get to a peacock feather from scratch. Once it was done, I went about analyzing the different steps and found that it would be too elaborate to explain each and every steps involved. Hence, instead of a step wise tutorial, here is a walk-through with snapshots at various stages.

Stage 1

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 1

Those are the simple steps that gives the basic form of the feather. Draw the stem, after the circle with the length as long as you wish. After that perform a union on the two shapes to get one shape (right one).

Stage 2

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 2

Draw an inverted triangle where the stem intersects the circle and again perform a union to get a single shape. Give a bit of concave curve to the bezier path.

Stage 3

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 3

This is an interesting part where you might need to zoom in to get the three circles close to each other as depicted above.

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 3a

Next draw a roughly elliptical shape, and then another smaller one with a bump at the bottom (middle image). After that, draw another thin stem between the base shape that pokes in to the bump.

Stage 4

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 4

If the previous stage was intricate, then we step up a notch and create a bristle as above. It is basically a closed shape formed by two line segments. They are curved at different degrees to enclose a narrow area.

Stage 5

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 5

Several copies of the curved bristle is taken and placed over the stem. As we work the way up the stem, we may need to rotate the bristle few degrees, every now and then.

Stage 6

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 6

Once the bristles are placed on the left side of the feather, it is just required to select all the bristles, make a copy and flip them horizontally. Observe that few bristles are overlapping at the tip of the feather. If it is not desirable, it may be corrected, as I did in the next stage.

Stage 7

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 7

For the gap in between the top bristles, there is a choice of drawing few more bristles from scratch or just reusing the same bristle after scaling and rotating it.

Stage 8

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 8

The lower bristles are moved so that they do not look like an array. Once that is done, all the bristles, and the basic original shape are combined using an union. We are almost there.

Stage 9

Peacock Feather Walkthrough Stage 9

That is it. Just color them up. You may need to reorder the different shapes so that they do not obscure the details. Once this is done, it can be grouped together and used in other artworks too.

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  1. vexed’s avatar

    cool… i’m currently learning this vector thinggi and i might try this…


    1. peanut butter *’s avatar

      i love this and it’s sooo simple :)


  2. Vyoma’s avatar

    Glad that you liked it. Do upload your work and let me know. ;)


  3. Facundo’s avatar

    Hi, nice walk-through. Here’s my version. I used Inkscape’s Create Tiled Clones feature to make the bristles and then hand tweak the position and angle of some.
    Let me know what you think.


  4. Vyoma’s avatar

    Hey Facundo. I like your version. It has got a neat Web 2.0ish feel to it.

    And that is an intelligent decision to use Tiled Clones – a nice use of the tool to its max.


  5. Mason K’s avatar

    Thanks for the tute. I did mine in illustrator and did things a little differently. First of all, I used a radial gradient, which I’m not sure if I actually like. But one thing I do like is tthe appearance of the black lines in the circular area. I got those using Path Blend in illustrator. To get lines like that without drawing them all, you can draw two vectors. Select them both, then go to object -> blend -> blend options and select specified steps.


  6. Vyoma’s avatar

    You are welcome, Mason.

    That is a nice version you did.

    And I particularly like how you got those realiztic blackish lines on the circular part. :)


  7. Corel Tutorials’s avatar

    Please send me your Tutorials to my e mail address

    Thank You


  8. Vyoma’s avatar

    Well, what you could do is, subscribe for the blog using the email subscription and all the blog posts would get mailed to you. The subscription form is on the top of the page – right hand side.


  9. manibharathi’s avatar

    Please send me your Tutorials to my e mail address

    Thank You


  10. Vyoma’s avatar

    manibharathi, use the email subscription form above. You can also use the tutorial index page to get them all.


  11. vicky’s avatar

    fantastic!! trying to make a 3d one out of paper for children to achieve…this is fab


  12. est’s avatar

    this is sooooooooooooooooo cool!


  13. huda’s avatar

    heyty iwant to make the peacock not its feathers………..okay understood…………….huhuhuhuhuhuhuhuuhuhuhh


  14. ginamichelle’s avatar

    thanks, exactly what i needed for my project. Have u heard of RedBubble? Art/Design site, check it out :)


  15. Bronwyn’s avatar

    Thank you very much. This is exactly what I needed for a wedding invitation. I adjusted it a bit by making the stalk longer and slightly curved, and made the fill of the array of bristles a gradient of purple, turquoise and green. It looks smashing.


  16. Harriet’s avatar

    What is the font used for the title next to the peacock feather image “peacock feather walkthrough”? Thanks!



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